October 10, 2016
Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
In a short time, we will all have the opportunity to elect new leaders for our nation, state and local communities. The right to vote is a cherished right, won by the sacrifices of many men and women who have serve3d our country in the past and the founders who established our Constitution.
As citizens of the United States, we have a duty to vote, a moral obligation to improve the community in which we live and to elect good leaders who make good and just laws that protect the rights and freedoms of all. St. Paul even told the early Christians to be good citizens of the Roman Empire and to give good example by their lives.
The Catholic Church does not endorse any candidate or political party. Each Catholic should inform themselves of the positions held by the various candidates and vote for those who most closely reflect the values and moral teaching that we as Catholic believe build a good and just society. There can be differences of opinions about how that is best achieved.
For us Catholics and for all people of good will, the following are beliefs that are non-negotiable:
- The reverence of sacredness of every human being from conception in the womb until natural death because the human person is created in the image and likeness of God.
- The right to life of every child in the womb.
- The sacredness of the family as the basic building block of society.
- The definition of Christian marriage as the permanent union of one man and one woman open to new life.
- The right of the human person to decent housing and employment at a just wage.
- The just and fair treatment of immigrants who come to our country to seek a better life for themselves and their families.
These values which we believe improve our society and preserve our civilization. I pray that each Catholic in the Diocese of Lafayette will take their duty to vote seriously and exercise that duty. May the Holy Spirit guide us all as we seek the will of God and build a just society for all citizens of the United States.
Faithfully yours in Christ,
Most Reverend J. Douglas Deshotel, D.D.
Bishop of Lafayette
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